Medusa


Her life

In the beginning, Medusa was a young, and very beautiful maiden. The daughter of Phorcys and Ceto was known for her gorgeous hair. She had two sisters who were immortal Gorgons, although she herself was mortal. She is also said to be related to the Graeae, who later acted as guards for the Gorgon sisters. Medusa is said to be the granddaughter of Oceanos and Gaia. Being as beautiful as she was, she attracted the attention of Posideon. He raped her in Athena’s temple, which made Athena livid. Athena took out her anger on Medusa by turning her into a horrbilis monster. She transformed into a monster with a large, round face, a flat nose, large teeth and a grotesque tongue that always hangs out. Medusa, was first said to have been changed into a winged horse, but is more commonly said to have had serpents for hair and the ability to turn anyone who looks at her to stone. She then moved to live with her sisters near the entrance to the underworld and by the west ocean. She is said to have been bidding their time by terrorizing men and turning them to stone.
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Her end

Being a fear inducing monster, she was the object of young Perseus’s journey to show his entrance into manhood. Her other sisters, the Graeae, betrayed her and gave Perseus the diections to where she was living. Athena also helped Perseus to kill Medusa by giving him a mirror. Hermes contributed by giving him a pair of winged sandals. These items made it easier for Perseus to come while she was asleep and use his sickle to attack her. Since she was mortal, Perseus was able to decapitate her. When she diedPegasus and the giant Chyrsoar emerged from her wound . Then it is said that some of her blood dripped out onto the Libyan desert causing snakes to grow up and spread across the land. Because her head retained its stone making power, Perseus took her head and used it to kill a sea monster, save his future wife, and to freeze the king Polydectys. In the end the head was placed on Athena’s aegis, which she uses in battle. Athena certainly went over and above to get revenge on Medusa.

Her legacy

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In Roman times people used pictures of Medusa’s head as protection from things, like the “evil eye”. Some would have statues of Perseus holding her head as a warning of their power. Others would decorate their homes with pictures of her because it was a popular story that was entertaining. It is also said that beautiful young girls would wear a mask of her face to protect them from creepy old men. She is also depicted on a coin used in Roman times. In more modern times Medusa has been used in books, movies, and other forms of entertainment. She is seen on clothing and other paraphernalia. Today people view Medusa in many different ways. She is very popular in action movies and novels. However, in modern times the media likes to portray Medusa as a powerful monster that fought heros fiercely and put up a fight when in reality she was murdered in her sleep.

Her Children

As previously mentioned Medusa had two children by Posideon. One if her children, Pegasus, went on to become the famous steed of Bellerophon, the son of the man who trained his horses to eat human flesh. Pegasus proved to be noble and helpful, he made it possible for Bellerophon to kill the Chimaera without even coming close to the beast. Pegasus is also said to have attempted to stop the foolish Bellerphron from attacking the gods. In the end Pegasus is supposed to have flown up to a sacred stable owned by Zeus and was well cared for the rest of his life. Medusa was also the mother of Chyrsoar who is not mentioned much in mythology, but it is said that he was a determined fighter, a giant, and to have fathered Geryon.
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Citations

"Medusa." Greek Mythology. Web. 04 May 2011. http://www.greekmythology.com/Myths/Creatures/Medusa/medusa.html.
Gorgones, Bare The. "MEDUSA & GORGONS : Greek Monsters ; Mythology ; Pictures : MEDOUSA & GORGONES." THEOI GREEK MYTHOLOGY, Exploring Mythology & the Greek Gods in Classical Literature & Art. Web. 04 May 2011. http://www.theoi.com/Pontios/Gorgones.html.